Down With Workplace Reviews!

According to the New York Times’ Well blog, workplace reviews aren’t just sucky, they’re really sucky, enough to ruin lives.

Annual reviews, writes Tara Parker-Pope, citing research by clinical psychologist Samuel A. Culbert, are so subjective to be meaningless, and can ruin lives.

One man said that years of good performance were scuttled by one bad review from a new boss. He was so stressed he ended up on medication and lost his job.

Anecdote doesn’t make fact, of course, but it’s true that if your boss doesn’t like you, it doesn’t matter how good you are at your job, as you’ll still likely get a bad review.

And Mark Shahriary, president and chief executive of Lucix Corporation in Camarillo, Calif., told Well that he stopped doing performance reviews for his employees after seeing what damage they caused. “People confuse the review with who they are,” he told Well. “If they get a review saying, ‘You’re not effective at work,’ they would hear, ‘You’re not effective as a person.’ “

There are those, of course, who are dying to even have the opportunity to get a review, as they’re tied in with salary increases. But in the media world, that’s becoming less and less likely.

Publish date: May 19, 2010 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT